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Owner of filthy restaurant with fly infestation in Hove fined
The owner of a fine-dining French restaurant has been fined more than £10,000 for failing to keep his premises clean.
Pascal Madjoudj was fined at Brighton Magistrates' Court yesterday after pleading guilty to 16 of 22 charges of failing to meet hygiene and food safety standards.
Brasserie Pascal, where customers can enjoy a Châteaubriand with pommes frites, forestiere sauce and vegetables for £49, was accused of having a “history of poor compliance” with food safety legislation by prosecutors.
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Inspectors from Brighton and Hove City Council visited the property in Second Avenue, Hove, on February 11 and raised a number of concerns including a fruit fly infestation, an empty pane of glass in a window which could allow pests in, dirty brooms hanging near clean plates and food debris on the floor and wall.
Mr Madjoudj, from Kenton Road in Hove, was also informed there was a lack of mechanical ventilation in the ladies' toilets while a sink in the kitchen had the cold water disconnected and a build-up of grease was creating a fire hazard.
On March 6 the council received an email from the restaurant saying that all the work had been carried out.
But when inspectors returned six days later they found several recommendations not acted upon.
Inspectors said while they saw evidence of some cleaning and repainting, there was still food and grease debris on the floor, glass was still missing from a window, the extractor fan had not been repaired and some lights were still faulty.
In court, Mr Madjoudj, who also manages the three La Fourchette eateries in Brighton and Hove, denied that plates were dirty claiming they were all disinfected in vinegar every day.
The 44-year-old father-of-two said he had opened Brasserie Pascal eight years ago but the company responsible for running the restaurant had entered voluntary liquidation on April 4.
In court, Mr Madjoudj announced his intentions to refloat the company after it had been the victim of financial mismanagement by other staff.
On hearing the sentence Mr Madjoudj cried “that's too much”.
Len Batten, prosecuting on behalf of Brighton and Hove City Council, said the restaurant had a “history of poor compliance with food safety regulations” including a warning in 2008 that the company was failing to meet food safety targets.
Magistrate Bill Ashworth said: “You have pleaded guilty to 16 separate charges which represent a state of affairs where the kitchen of this particular restaurant was in a parlous state and was insanitary placing your customers and the general public at risk.”
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